Fronted by Moroccan Maalem Omar Afif, Gnawa Trance Fusion play a roots fusion of Gnawa blues, psychedelic jazz and afrobeat.
The sound is a rich and polyrhythmic combination of the Guembri (base-lute), Balafon (wooden xylophone), Endongo (thumb piano), Krakeb (metal castanets), saxophone and vibrant call and response vocals.
Gnawa music is a well-preserved heritage of ritual Sufi poetry with traditional music and dance, which has part West-African roots. Gradually fused with many influences such as afro-beat, acid-jazz, and hip-hop, it is a music in constant evolution.
Traditionally performed in Morocco at Lilas, entire communal nights of spirituality and healing which are guided by a master musician, Gnawa can bring about trance states in participants in the ceremonies. Gnawa Trance Fusion’s adddictive rhythms, melodies and chants create a unanimity of heart, mind and soul. It’s hard to resist the Gnawa Trance Fusion experience, a celebration of existence at a time when you never needed it more!
Omar Afif & Gnawa Trance Fusion comprises Omar Afif guembri and vocals; Andy Cooke xylophone /balafon, thumbpiano/endongo (Rise Kagona, Baobab Gateway); Steve Kettley saxophone (Salsa Celtica, Orange Claw Hammer); George Ato Williams drumkit (Fela Kuti, Edikanfo) and Heather Muchamore (Vocals).
The band have performed at Knockengorroch World Ceilidh, Kelburn Garden Party, Solas Festival, Nomad’s tent Edinburgh (Edinburgh Fringe) and Pianodrome, Meadows Festival, the Hive Edinburgh and Stereo Café Glasgow.